“El gran amor del conde Drácula” (1973)
Popularly recognized by Euro Horror enthusiasts for his continuing role as lycanthrope Wademar Daninsky, Paul Naschy portrays an unexpectedly sentimental variation of cinema’s favorite vampire in “El gran amor del conde Drácula” (“Count Dracula’s Great Love”), a film which raises the bar for erotic content to a level that would cause the makers of Hammer Films’ bodice and bosom laden features blush in comparison and, significantly, is one of the rare films which delves deeply into the realm of lesbian vampirism without an appreciable claim to a conceptual influence markedly attributable to Sheridan Le Fanu’s Carmilla.
A coach containing five travelers is disabled thereby necessitating their staying at the very abandoned sanitarium about which they had been discussing the ghoulish anecdotal history prior to their being cast afoot.. Occupied by a mysterious but kindly Dr.Wendell Marlow (Naschy) who just happens to have renovated a sufficient number of bed chambers to accommodate the stranded quintet, the travelers spend an inordinate amount of time in dreary small talk until the film relaxes into the vampiric domino principle which is its true destination. The film is temporarily infused with a rush of energy as, with the exception of the virginal Karen (Haydee Politoff), the houseguests are summarily transmogrified into fanged nocturnal prowlers with the onset of a rash of exponentially increasing bloodletting.
Up to this point Javier Aguirre’s direction has proven bloodless, both figuratively and literally, yet when the horror elements eventually kick in, he exhibits a perverse flair for stylish and sensual female-on-female vampire attacks; not the kind of thing that will significantly elevate a director’s status in the eyes of critics when one’s true calling seems limited to such a rarified specialty that may not be worth doing in the first place, though it’s always preferable to see even the trivial executed with panache.
To read the complete review, click the following link to: https://chandlerswainreviews.wordpress.com/sticky-floors-stained-screens-days-nights-at-the-grindhouse/